George Clooney has made a heartbreaking admission about a secret medical condition that he suffered when he was younger.
During an episode of Jimmy Kimmel Live, guest George Clooney made a shocking revelation when Kimmel tried to make a joke about an old photo of the star, revealing that he suffered from Bell’s palsy as a teenager.
Sharing a photo of George from his younger years, wearing glasses and shaggy hair, Kimmel said: “George, we happened to have some pictures of you from…this was a little before high school.”
“I want to point out that my mother cut my hair,” George replied.
After this, Kimmel brought out another photo of the star, aged just fifteen, pointing out his expression in the image, particularly, his half-smile.
“Now wait, I want to point out something because you’re going to laugh, gonna make a joke. I have Bell’s palsy there and half of my face is paralysed,” George said, to the surprise of the audience.
“Look at this, watch this. If you go like this,” George said leaning over and covering one side of his face with his hand, “On the other side, it’s a completely different face. So now make your joke.
“Make your funny joke,” George joked, taunting the host. “Come on, funny man. Come on, let me give you sad face.”
“You know what? I didn’t have a joke, George, and you really brought everybody down. Maybe we should have another toast to bring things back up,” Jimmy said.
George then took a shot with Jimmy and Snoop Dogg, who was also a guest on the show.
According to ABC, Clooney developed Bell’s palsy when he was thirteen years old, after suffering damage to his cranial nerve.
As per Mayo Clinic, “Bell’s palsy is a condition that causes sudden weakness in the muscles on one side of the face. In most cases, the weakness is temporary and significantly improves over weeks. The weakness makes half of the face appear to droop. Smiles are one-sided, and the eye on the affected side resists closing.”
According to Clooney’s father, Nick, his face remained paralysed for several weeks following his diagnosis, and he struggled with a crooked smile as a result.
“It certainly affected him at the time,” Nick Clooney said. “But even there, George would find ways with humour to make it work for him. He would make fun of himself. He always did that. He tried to make fun of himself before others made fun of him, no matter what the disability might be.”
He added that although the condition went away decades ago, there is still “some residue of a little eye drooping” when the star gets tired.
Fans were shocked when they heard Clooney’s story, with one writing: “Gorgeous George gets better looking all the time! Who would have thought that from that old photo.”
While another said: “Clooney looks much better nowadays.”
“Bell’s Palsy is a horrible thing. I’ve had it twice,” a third wrote.